Joe Calzaghe - "I'm A More Experienced Fighter Than Bernard Hopkins"

14.04.08 - by James Slater: In an exclusive interview with Setanta sports in which Joe Calzaghe spoke to T.V presenter Des Lynham, the unbeaten Welshman spoke in depth about the man he is going to be fighting in less than five days time. Some of the things the 36 year old said were quite noteworthy, too..

"He [Hopkins] is a bit of an idiot really. What else can I say ?" Calzaghe began when asked what he thought of Hopkins. "I don't think he understands, He's fighting somebody who is more experienced than him. He's 43, but I've probably been fighting for longer than him," Joe stated.

This, for me, was a bit of a strange thing for Calzaghe to say. Does he really believe he is more experienced than the two-weight world champion? Let's take a look at the statistics, and see if Joe is right or wrong. In number of overall pro bouts, B-Hop holds the edge - with 54 fights on his resume compared to 44 on Calzaghe's. In number of world title fights, "The Executioner" has had 27, Joe C, on the other hand, has had 22. Both men's number are impressive here, but yet again B-Hop has the edge. And finally, in terms of length of pro career, Hopkins again has more experience - having boxed as a pro since way back in 1988. Calzaghe began his pro career back in 1993. This makes me ask, based on Joe's "I'm more experienced" quote - has Calzaghe looked at the stats? Hopkins, though this doesn't automatically make him the better fighter, IS the more experienced.

Another thing Calzaghe said bothered me with regards to his preparations.

"I never really watch fight tapes," Joe said. "I've watched just one fight of his [Hopkins'] fights."

Joe never said which fight of B-Hop's this was, but, just one? Why not take the time to better study the masterful boxer you are soon to be swapping punches with? Sure, all fighters do things there own way, and some profess to never watching tapes at all. But, call it a hunch and nothing more, I now have at least a little feeling that Calzaghe is somewhat taking Hopkins for granted. Has over confidence gotten to "The Pride of Wales?"

A new weight class, his first fight in America, against his very first all-time great opponent! Shouldn't Joe be trying to get every possible edge he can to win? And as for saying, and appearing to truly believe, that he is a more experienced fighter than the former middleweight and current light-heavyweight king; Joe is fooling himself on that score. Bernard Hopkins is the word experienced personified - in life as well as in the boxing ring.

Article posted on 15.04.2008

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